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Chapter 6 : Burning Black Eye
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James was in a bright mood. His Quidditch team was the best it had ever been, he was Head Boy, his sister was keeping her knickers on and Lily Evans was finally starting to fall for him. As he headed to breakfast, the glum face of Lily Evans immediately dragged him back down to Earth. Seeing Lily so downtrodden worried James, so he headed over, determined to try and help her. He slumped down next to Hayley, who was sitting opposite Hope and Lily. Remus had dragged Sirius off to some pre-breakfast walk with Amelia and Jake was still in bed. It was Sunday, so lots of people slept in. Despite this, noon was not far away and Jake had showed no signs of getting up, even when James tried to wake him. Jake’s powerful defensive spells he placed around himself whilst sleeping made sure that James couldn’t get close to him without getting blasted backwards.
“What’s up Lily?” he asked, troubled by the lack of her generally sparking demeanour.
“Nothing James,” Lily mumbled in reply. Hope shot James a “just leave it” look and James reluctantly nodded. He didn’t like the idea of Lily being hurt, but if there was nothing he could do about it… James was brought back down to earth as Jake flopped down alongside him. Jake caught Lily’s eye and he smiled at her, not noticed by James. Lily seemed to perk up a bit and James frowned slightly. He glanced at Jake, who looked across James to Hayley.
“Can you pass the ketchup?” he muttered grouchily. Jake didn’t do mornings well.
“Sure!” Hayley replied, giggling as Jake piled the sauce onto his bacon. “Say Jake, isn’t your birthday in two days?”
Lily nearly choked on her toast, causing everyone to look at her. Jake felt a huge surge of guilt. He’d never told Lily his birthday, yet less than a week at Hogwarts and Hayley knew it. James threw Jake a mischievous grin, which Jake didn’t take to be a good thing. Hayley was also grinning cheekily and Jake knew they had something planned.
“Yeah it is,” he replied, trying to be casual as he delved back into his bacon.
“PARTY!” James exclaimed, punching Jake’s arm playfully. “You guys are all invited obviously!”
“Nice,” Hope replied, shaking Lily’s arm to get her into gear. “We’ll be there!”
Lily managed a smile and Jake sighed.
“Looks like I’ve got no choice in the matter then doesn’t it!”
Remus dragged Sirius along behind him. Sirius was grumbling that he was not the sort of person to go wandering the grounds before it got dark, to which Remus retorted that he needed some fresh air. Amelia was grateful that Remus had brought Sirius with him. She was starting to like him more and more and they were getting closer thanks to Quidditch practice. Sirius spent half their last practice session chasing her in the air and he’d only just been able to catch her. Whilst she knew that the string of compliments he threw her way were the same ones he used on every girl a hundred times a day, she couldn’t prevent her heart fluttering a little bit every time he called her gorgeous or cute. She also knew that Remus had put a lot of effort into dragging Sirius along and she liked to think that he knew that she wanted to spend more time with him.
“Stop moaning Sirius!” she cried, patting him on the shoulder. “This can’t be that bad can it? You’ve got fresh air, the birds, flowers…”
“I’m not Remus!” Sirius exclaimed. “I don’t find joy in things like that! Give me a fit girl and a broom closet any day!”
“Well you’re halfway there!” Amelia replied eagerly, chuckling at the amused smile on Sirius’ face.
“I guess I am babe. And judging by how pink Moony has just gone, I think he’d agree.”
Amelia laughed at Remus’ expression as his face went red. She linked arms with him and skipped on ahead of Sirius.
“He’s a damn sight cuter than you Black!” she called back, teasing Sirius. Remus smiled at her awkwardly and she cuddled up closer to him, hoping to make Sirius jealous. She caught a look back. Sirius looked torn between annoyance and laughter. He jogged to catch up to them and winked at Remus who tried to huddle back into his coat. Amelia laughed and the three of them headed back to the castle.
“Guess what Padfoot, Moony?” James yelled when they entered the common room. “Party to celebrate Hunty’s big 1-8!”
Both boys exchanged a grin, but Amelia looked slightly disheartened. Every year, she and Jake had done something special together for their birthdays and it looked as if this year, things were going to be different. Jake seemed to have sensed her disappointment because he snuck away from the 3 raving Marauders to grab a word with her.
“Listen Amy. We’ve got a free lesson Tuesday before lunch. So we can go out into the grounds and have a birthday picnic, just you and me. It’ll be like old times!”
He could see she was still unsure, so he pulled her into a reassuring hug. Lily tapped his shoulder and he turned, grinning when he saw who it was.
“Oh hey Lil. Listen, I’m sorry I didn’t tell you about my birthday, but I didn’t think I’d see you so…”
“Don’t worry it’s fine!” she interjected. “Listen, Jake. I was wondering if we could talk, just you and me?”
Jake was a bit puzzled but decided to go along with it.
“Yeah sure Lil. I’ve got to meet some homework and shit to do, but maybe 6? There’s an empty classroom on the second floor always left open.”
“Sounds good!” Lily flashed him a small smile and ran over to join Hope, who for some reason was beaming. Jake watched after her, wondering what Lily was up to.
Amelia headed down to dinner at about six. She was hoping to meet Remus afterwards so he could help her with her Transfiguration. Amelia quickly found she was good at most subjects, but she struggled with transfiguring things. Whilst neither her nor Jake liked herbology, they were both fine at it and he excelled in Charms and Defence Against the Dark Arts. But where Jake really struggled, Amelia flourished. Potions. Professor Slughorn had taken an instant like to Amelia and she was one of his favourite pupils. She and Lily were both magnificent at Potions and more often than not, she found herself helping Jake out of a sticky spot with his concoctions. Not that he minded. The pair was good together because they were constantly bailing the other out, whether it was in Potions or anything else. It was just one way she could level the scoreboard. That and she could always destroy him in Quidditch.
Amelia stopped just before she entered the Great Hall. The sound of crashing came to her ears as she passed a broom-cupboard and before she could stop herself, she was moving towards the cupboard instead of the hall. As she got closer, she could hear moaning as well as crashing and had a faint idea of what was happening inside. As she reached the door, she wondered if it was a good idea to be interrupting the people who were inside. But then she heard a familiar voice murmuring to hurry up and she knew who was in there. She flung open the door to confirm her suspicions and let out a quiet but shocked: “Oh!” Sirius grinned sheepishly at her, his hands firmly wrapped around Hope. Hope’s skirt was halfway down her legs and her bra was round Sirius’ neck. Sirius was topless and his belt was almost undone. As much as Amelia wanted to look away, she couldn’t, her eyes fixated on the scene in front of her. Hope kicked the door shut in her face and by the time Sirius had his shirt on and had opened the door to see if Amelia was ok, she was gone, leaving a trail of tear stains on the oak floor.
Amelia didn’t know why she was crying. She had known Sirius was quite a womanizing person and she didn’t like him that much. So why was she pouring her heart out through her eyes. She hadn’t realised how much Sirius had meant to her until now. She was hurtling up the stairs and found herself bursting into the second floor. There he was. She fell into Jake’s arms, grabbing him and never wanting him to let go.
Lily was running late. She was just reaching the second floor but when she arrived, Jake wasn’t there alone. He was sat on the floor, his arm around a crying Amelia. Jake shot her an apologetic smile and Lily, as much as she wanted to talk to Jake, knew she had no choice but to leave. Lily slipped out; leaving the two huddled in the corner. A million questions shot into her head. Why was Jake so obsessed with her? Why didn’t he feel the same way about her? Were they more of a couple then they were letting on? Lily shook her head. She had seen the dynamic of Jake and Amelia’s relationship over the summer. They loved each other alright, but at the same time, they were nothing more than best friends. She was just being paranoid. Wasn’t she? After all, there had been moments where she thought she’d seen a spark between them. Maybe they were a couple, they just didn’t realise it? Either way, Lily knew that trying to talk to Jake was impossible until Amelia was willing to let him go.
Lily was alone. This was worrying for James. She looked sad. That worried James. However, even as James blinked, Lily wasn’t alone anymore. Snivellus was there, talking to her. James rushed over, anxious to try and stop Snape trying anything.
“Just leave me alone Severus,” James heard Lily say. He placed an arm on Snape’s shoulder, but Snape shrugged him off.
“What is wrong with you Lily? You act like a spoilt puppy and then you shove me off when I try to help you!” Snape cried, grabbing her arm. She shoved him off.
“Look Severus, I’ve got a lot on right now and the last thing I need is you getting on my back. Yeah we used to be friends, but then you started hanging out with those nasty little twats. If you want to be friends, then try saying hi at breakfast or asking me to hang out sometime. Don’t come rushing up to me when I’m clearly upset and have a go at me!”
Snape was clearly hurt by this, but before he could reply, James was standing in front of Lily, telling him to leave. Snape pulled out his wand and fired a curse at James, who staggered backwards as it hit him square in the chest. Lily caught him and he reacted almost straight away, blasting Snape backwards with a stunning jinx. Snape growled and flew another string of curses James’ way, Lily diving for cover as they shattered the area behind him. James moved into a disarming spell, then as he caught Snape’s wand, punched him square in the face. He then blasted Snape back into the wall with a double stunning spell and then dropped Snape’s wand in front of him.
“You can’t match me Snivellus. Try that again and I won’t be so nice,” James growled, real menace in his voice. He turned to Lily, who had found herself a nice spot behind a suit of armour. “You okay Evans?”
“Not really, but I’ll live,” Lily replied, sniffing slightly as she rubbed her eyes. James’ concern touched her but she was not in the mood for his unique brand of flirting.
“Anything I can help with? The last thing I want is to see you hurt!”
Lily hated herself in that moment. She’d been overly harsh with Severus and driven him away, she knew James liked her, but she’d done nothing about it and had led him to believe he had a chance and despite all her efforts, she’d failed to communicate to Jake how much she cared about him. Her love life was a wreck and right now all she wanted to do was drown her sorrows.
“You can get him something to drink! Other than that there’s not a lot you can do Potter!”
Lily knew she’d been too mean. James recoiled at her harsh tone and she had called him by his surname for the first time this year. She knew she had to be honest with him, but it was too late for that.
“You can get your own damn drink Lily. Next time you can deal with Snape on your own!”
Lily turned and watched James walk away, knowing she was continuing to screw up everything that was put in front of her.
Sirius couldn’t help but worry about Amelia as he and Hope slipped out of the cupboard. He’d not been willing to shag her just yet (he wasn’t that much of a player) and he was certain she wasn’t happy about that, but at the same time, he’d thoroughly enjoyed the time they had spent together. But the look of sheer horror on Amelia’s face made him wonder if maybe she liked him and not Remus. After all, her flirtatious behaviour with Moony had suggested to Sirius that maybe Remus was getting lucky for once. And Sirius was more than happy to help Remus along the way. Maybe it was more shock than anything else… Whatever happened, Sirius just hoped that Amelia didn’t break Remus’ heart.
Amelia hadn’t spoken in the twenty minutes since she’d rushed into the room. However, the second that she had sat beside Jake, her sobs had made it clear she needed him. So they’d sat. She’d cried and he’d held onto her until she’d been able to relax. No words had needed to be said. She needed him and he’d been there. Eventually, she managed to take a deep breath and tell him what had happened. Jake knew how hard Amelia had worked not to make herself vulnerable so to see her so upset over Sirius troubled him. He wondered if Sirius knew how much damage he caused girls. As the darkness fell over Hogwarts, Jake knew he and Amelia would have to move eventually. She clung to him, as though he could provide some release from the pain that was gripping her. He lifted her to her feet. She tried to smile but her lips refused to oblige.
“Sorry Amy, but you’re gonna have to walk back to the common room. I’m not carrying you!”
Amelia composed herself and punched his arm, as if the mere suggestion of him carrying her offended her. “You’d snap like a twig if you tried!” she retorted.
Jake chuckled and together, they headed back towards the common room.
A/N: Wow bet you didn't see that coming eh?Keep reading and reviewing guys, I love waking up and seeing new reads :)
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